One of the most-hyped NYC restaurant openings of the summer is fast approaching, and what it isn't is as interesting as what it is. Reclaimed wood by the yard? Nope. Simple farm-to-table dishes that celebrate heirloom ingredients? Sorry. Prohibition-era cocktails? Nowhere to be seen.
We're talking, of course, about Oleanders, the new restaurant opening at the McCarren Hotel in Brooklyn. What it is is a fern bar - one of those distinctly late-70s, early-80s temples of preppy mildness, filled with leafy plants, Tiffany lamps and lounge seating. Food leans toward staid classics like lobster thermidor and meatloaf, and cocktails are of the sweet '80s variety.
Oleanders is certainly an outlier, and might turn out to be an anomaly - but the excitement around its arrival also shows that the leading-edge Brooklyn crowd is increasingly ready to look beyond craft culture for inspiration. And where they go, the mainstream is sure to follow.
Pic via Eater